After a 92-minute rain delay prior to the start of the game, the Orioles bats needed a little more time to wake up. Baltimore scored just one run in the first six innings, but the team erupted for three in the seventh and added five more in the eighth on its way to a 9-2 victory. The win marked a split in the two-game mini series against the Nationals, and provided some confidence to at least one struggling Orioles player.
Trey Mancini entered the game with just one hit in his last 27 at bats. Mancini turned things around in a big way, blasting two home runs and driving in three runs Wednesday night. The Notre Dame alum was bound to break out of the slump eventually, but did so with some gusto in a multi-homer game.
Mancini got the O’s on the board with a solo home run in the bottom of the fourth. The former 8th-round pick turned around a 91 mph fastball and turned it into a no-doubt home run to right-center field. The blast evened the score at one, and had to feel good for Mancini.
The Nationals reclaimed the lead with an Adam Eaton RBI double in the top of the fifth, but the O’s offensive outpour brought the Birds back in the seventh.
Mancini led off the inning with a walk, and Chance Sisco followed with a single. Mancini advanced to third on a fly ball to right by Renato Núñez, and came around to score on a single by Anthony Santander. Sisco advanced to third on the knock by Santander, and scored on a bloop to center by Chris Davis. After poor base running led to two outs in the third inning, it was nice to see heads up base running lead to runs in the seventh.
Stevie Wilkerson worked a walk to load the bases, and Rio Ruiz stepped up with one out. Ruiz hit a shallow fly ball to center field, but Santander broke for the plate anyway. Nationals center fielder Victor Robles fired a perfect one-hop throw from center, but Santander’s left hand barely touched the back of the plate before Yan Gomes could apply the tag. The play stood up after video review, and the Orioles led by two.
Paul Fry and Mychal Givens combined to keep the Nationals off the board in the top of the eighth, but the Orioles weren’t satisfied with just a two-run lead.
Jonathan Villar reached on a throwing error to start the eighth, and Mancini followed with his second blast of the game. The ball just cleared the left field fence, and survived a brief video replay to check for fan interference. The homer chased Nationals reliever Javy Guerra from the game, and gave the Birds a four-run cushion.
Sisco and Núñez followed with singles, and Sisco came around to score once again after moving from first to third. After Santander drove in Sisco, Stevie Wilkerson doubled to score Santander and place the Birds up six runs. Rio Ruiz singled to center to give the Orioles their final run of the inning.
Givens stayed on in the top of the ninth and received a save despite the 9-2 score.
Even without the crooked numbers late in the game, the Orioles were put in a position to succeed by starter Aaron Brooks and reliever Gabriel Ynoa. Brooks allowed one run in 2.2 innings, and Ynoa held the Nationals to just two hits and one run in 4.1 innings of relief. Ynoa picked up his first win of the season, and made a few big pitches to prevent Washington from a chance at a big inning.
The offensive explosion came at a dire time for the Orioles. Not only did Mancini have a big night, but Richie Martin singled in the eighth to end an 0-24 skid. Davis finished 2-4 with an RBI, and Baltimore totaled 14 hits on the evening. The Birds are off Thursday, but they’ll look to take this momentum into a weekend series against the Red Sox.
Who was the most Birdland player on Wednesday, July 17
This poll is closed
Trey Mancini (2-3, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 2 R)
Gabriel Ynoa (4.1 innings, 2 hits, 1 ER, first win of the season)
Anthony Santander (2-3, 2 RBI, R)
Rio Ruiz (2-3, 2 RBI)